Review by Cade
I wasn’t a fan of Hotel of the Damned from the beginning, which was probably due to its cringe-worthy opening credits and mediocre opening scene. Nicky (Louis Mandylor), a recent ex-convict, leaves jail with his friend Jimmy (Peter Dobson) to find his now estranged daughter with a drug-addicted boyfriend who apparently plans to sell her into prostitution. These characters make up the entirety of the cast. Nicky and Jimmy more or less abduct the two, but when they get into a fairly serious car accident (in which they all miraculously survive with no fatal injuries), they become stranded.Initially, I was very engaged and intrigued by the premise, but my opinion of the film rapidly deteriorated afterwards, mostly because of the lack of a sensical plot. Oh, and then they take refuge in an abandoned hotel, which happens to belong to a cult of savage cannibals who don’t take kindly to visitors.
I struggled to find deeper meaning or theme beneath Hotel of the Damned. Only Nicky’s backstory was given sufficient time to be developed, the others at times could feel shallow. It seemed like the cannibals in the hotel was more circumstantial to explore the relationships between the characters. In retrospect, the film was less about inciting fear in viewers and more about the reconciliation of a broken bond between a father and daughter.
One strength of the film lies in the flashbacks, which were triggered at appropriate times and were just interesting overall, as they provided a lot of needed context. Unfortunately, they pretty much ceased as the plot continued. There were some disturbing images throughout, but for the most part, action sequences it was evenly paced. The cannibals, who were the antagonists of the film, were hardly explained or justified at all. I found myself hating them with a passion, however, for their conflict with the protagonists.
Hotel of the Damned may be enjoyed by those who want are looking some decent acting combined with an interesting idea and plot. Unfortunately, poor execution makes chances of such enjoyment tricky.
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